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10 Competitive Cards to "Ash Blossom" in Yu-Gi-Oh

Jeremy enjoys dueling in between working as a chemical analyst and campus building manager.

Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring

Ash Blossom & Joyous Spring

How to Use the Hand Trap Ash Blossom

Ever since her debut, Ash Blossom remains arguably the best "hand trap" of all time, able to discard herself to negate an effect that would add a card to hand or summon/send a card from deck.

This infamously ruins any combo piece that searches or draws a card, meaning even first-turn players have to worry about disruption, and she's especially effective on cards with activation costs. Completely unlimited, decks can run up to 3 copies, and she's so prevalent that she's hindered otherwise good plays—here are ten great cards for Ash to negate!

Ties of the Brethren

Ties of the Brethren

10. Ties of the Brethren

Used In: Low-level decks

Ties makes a fantastic turn one play, as its cost of preventing your battle phase doesn't matter the first round. It summons two level monsters from your deck with the same level, type, and attribute as one of your level 4 or lower monsters.

You can't special summon for the rest of the turn, but this is still an easy couple monsters, notably with their effects intact. However, activation also requires a steep 2000 life, and like any activation cost, you don't get it refunded if Ash Blossom stops you.

Sky Striker Mobilize - Engage!

Sky Striker Mobilize - Engage!

9. Sky Striker Mobilize - Engage!

Used In: Sky Strikers (no surprises there)

Hands-down the best Sky Striker card, Engage moves around the limited list since it's one of the closest things to a legal Pot of Greed. It finds a Sky Striker card, then draws if you have at least three spells in your graveyard.

At worst, it replaces itself in hand, and at best, it's an easy +1 advantage, assuming of course you aren't Ash'ed. Fortunately, you sort of win the Ash trade since even without the effect you get another spell in grave, which Strikers want, but it'd still work even better without Ash.

Shaddoll Fusion

Shaddoll Fusion

8. Shaddoll Fusion

Used In: Shaddolls

Shaddolls have multiple fusion options, usually ending in El Shaddoll Winda who limits players to one special summon per turn, a fantastic net. Base Shaddoll Fusion is the best, as it lets you use materials from deck if your opponent controls an extra deck monster (and your Shaddolls will activate their sent-to-GY effects).

Thing is, Ash can negate it whether you intend to use deck materials or not, simply because you could. The one saving grace is that El Shaddoll fusion monsters can recover Shaddoll spells/traps when sent to graveyard, so you might get your Ash'd card back eventually, but it still slows an already-sluggish theme.

By the way, Ash can also be used against one of the best main deck Shaddolls (Reeshaddoll Wendi), who summons another Shaddoll from deck, and it's also useful against generic dark support Allure of Darkness.

Mythical Beast Master Cerberus

Mythical Beast Master Cerberus

7. Mythical Beast Master Cerberus

Used In: Mythical Beasts/Endymion

Uninterrupted, Master Cerberus destroys himself from scale to find a level 7 or lower Mythical, usually Jackal King, whose scale effect then summons Cerberus, giving you an easy 2800 beatstick who accumulates two spell counters with each spell and can spend four to banish a monster and temporarily gain its ATK.

Basically, Cerberus is quite strong, but if Ash stops him, pendulum players are stuck with a terrible scale 4. Even worse, they probably won't be able to pendulum summon, as playing another scale prevents them from trying Cerberus later (both he and Jackal King need an empty scale to function).

PSY-Framegear Gamma

PSY-Framegear Gamma

6. PSY-Framegear Gamma

Used In: Any deck, especially with psychic support

Gamma's actually pretty similar to Ash as a hand trap that summons itself and normal monster PSY-Frame Driver to negate an opposing monster effect while you control no cards, and unlike Ash, it also destroys that monster!

Gamma is also a tuner that can synchro summon into a level 8 alongside Driver, bringing out gross threats like Borreload Savage or PSY-Framelord Omega. Ash him to win the trade and hopefully leave your opponent with an upcoming dead draw (Driver).

A Hero Lives

A Hero Lives

5. A Hero Lives

Used In: Any HERO variant

Heroes maintain a solid presence thanks to powerful cards like Absolute Zero (who nukes the field when leaving), Dark Law (who banishes opposing cards), and of course Phoenix Enforcer (who continuously destroys cards and revives himself).

But their best combos really need some bonus summons, which is where this spell comes in, paying half your life while you have no monsters to summon a Hero from deck. Not only is this great for triggering the search effect of Shadow Mist or Stratos, it preserves your normal summon for another card.

Cards of Consonance

Cards of Consonance

4. Cards of Consonance

Used In: Blue-Eyes

Unchecked, Consonance is crucial to Blue-Eyes speed. It discards a dragon tuner with 1000 or less ATK to draw two cards. This usually leads to +1, as you either discard White Stone of Ancients to find a free Blue-Eyes, or White Stone of Legends to summon one at end of turn (you can also toss a Debris Dragon or Destrudo the Lost Dragon's Frisson).

There's also no once-per-turn limitation, so you can see how this could quickly snowball. But Ash negates the double-draw (you thankfully still get any tuner GY effect), spending one card to stop two for an immediate advantage. Compounding the Blue-Eyes problem is…

Celestial Observatory

Celestial Observatory

Sacred Sword of Seven Stars

Sacred Sword of Seven Stars

Trade-In

Trade-In

3. Monster-Cyclers

Used In: Anything with levels 6, 7, or 8

I want to like these cards, but Ash makes them so dang risky. Each effectively tosses a monster with a specific level (see below for specifics) to draw two cards, letting you pitch what you don't need to find what you do. But since they all -1 as cost, they're immediate disadvantage if Ash'd. In particular, Trade-In is another Blue-Eyes staple that puts your big dragons to work by attempting to find new cards, but with Ash around, you're just as likely to -1 yourself.

  • Celestial Observatory: Places a level 6 from hand or field to bottom of deck to draw twice
  • Sacred Sword of Seven Stars: Banish a level 7 from hand or field to draw twice
  • Trade-In: Discards a level 8 to draw twice.
Pendulum Call

Pendulum Call

2. Pendulum Call

Used In: Pendulum Magicians

If resolved, Pendulum Call (which is searchable by Duelist Alliance) discards any card to add two pendulum Magicians with different names to hand. Not only that, but until the end of the next turn, your Magician scales can't be destroyed by card effects.

This works wonders for ensuring you have proper scales, and your discarded card can be recovered with either Oafdragon Magician or Black Fang Magician. The scale protection also lets you use the bonus effect of Time Pendulumgraph.

Too bad it's all ruined with a simple Ash.

Pot of Desires

Pot of Desires

Pot of Extravagance

Pot of Extravagance

Pot of Prosperity

Pot of Prosperity

1. Pot of Desires/Extravagance/Prosperity

Used In: Anything

These cards wield high activation costs in exchange for massive search power independent of archetype, but as always, Ash stops them cold. Desires and Extravagance banish cards for a +1, while Prosperity only replaces itself in hand but excavates six cards, practically guaranteeing you get your combo piece. By stopping these and plus prior spells, Ash also severely reduces the power of Endymion spell counter-needing cards (who already hurt from their ace card, Servant of Endymion, being limited).

  • Pot of Desires: Banish 10 from deck to draw twice
  • Pot of Extravagance: Banish 3 or 6 randomly from extra to draw once or twice
  • Pot of Prosperity: Banish 3 or 6 chosen from extra to excavate that many cards and add one to hand.
Crystron Halqifibrax

Crystron Halqifibrax

More Ash Blossom Synergies

Before deciding whether you think Ash should be limited, consider two more factors in her favor. One, she combos with popular link monster Crystron Halqifibrax (who summons a level 3 or lower tuner from deck), meaning she can also facilitate synchro summons.

Second, since she doesn't negate the activation of cards, but the effect, you can't reattempt them again that turn. For example, if your Pot of Desires gets negated by a card like Solemn Judgment, you can activate another Desires that same turn because you never successfully activated one in the first place. But with Ash, you did activate the card, its effect simply didn't resolve, meaning you can't try again until your next turn.

This gives her a small but appreciated advantage over other negates. Her zombie type and fire attribute also offer some interesting synergies, but for now, share your thoughts and I'll see you at our next YGO countdown!

© 2022 Jeremy Gill